Sunday, August 31, 2008

Tuck It Under the Mattress

After winding down from a long travel day, the Dr. decided to play a little live poker, and I put the household to bed.

Decided a little Pokerstars might be in order while I re-did my nails. Nothing like multi-tasking.

I signed up for the freeroll Stud tournament, and donked off some of my play money chips on some big suckouts at the 45 player HE MTT. Ok, in retrospect, although my other play was pretty good, I shouldn't have gone all in with the pocket 4s. Against pocket Ks? But who knew . . .

I played the stud tourney patiently (as I play everything), and found myself keeping ahead of the average stack. By the time I finished my top coat (which dries in a mere 30 seconds, ladies), I was right in the middle of a field of 150+. Only the top 88 won tickets to the next round. I did some math, thought about how tired I was, how fabulous my nails looked, and decided that I'd stuffed enough chips under the mattress to wait it out, and didn't have as much patience as I'd had 2 hours earlier.

Night all!

* * * * *

This morning, I found this message in my e-mail inbox . . .

Dear Mrs Chako,

You finished the tournament in 53rd place.

This qualifies you for a seat in Tournament #103639440.

Yayy me!

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Busy Bees . . .

Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

It's Not All Mountains . . .

Some of the softer side of Mt. Rainier . . .

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Guard Your Junk

Phrase that made me snicker hardest today?

". . . part of the evil side of me was trying to draw him in, so I can knee him in the nuts . . . "

Maybe its just my perspective . . .

But then again, this commercial has my 11-year old giggling . . . and he's actually got junk.

"He was injured. Injured bad . . . "

Maybe getting nailed in the junk is just universally humorous.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Friday, August 29, 2008

You Sure are Pretty . . .

. . . said the drunk, as he sat next to me at the poker table.

We were in this total dive casino in South Seattle. A new acquaintance comped us tickets to the Thursday night comedy show, which was awesome, even if the actual venue was less than spectacular. Thanks, Jerry. We invited the dynamic duo of Cayne and Joshua, but we suspect they were either:

a) Having a romantic evening with their new found love (Joshua),
b) Having nasty, raunchy, non-committal sex with whatever single mom they could find (Cayne), or
c) Enjoying each others' company. Read that as you wish.

But Zeem joined us and enjoyed the show, so afterwards, we sat down together and played a little poker with the locals. There were a few players who just really didn't understand the game, the etiquette, or what the betting structure was (yes, you, Mr. "all-in" at the 3-6 limit game). So at times, it was a little like the special Olympics of poker. Which is probably a disservice to the fine athletes in the Special Olympics.

I knew I was in trouble when I smelled the alcohol fumes. He leaned over and opened with the "you sure are pretty" line . . . not even very original. But I was polite.

Poker rooms tend to be cold. I tend to get cold easily. So I sat at the poker table, shaking my legs, in an effort to try to get some circulation going.

"You're nervous," he commented. When I looked at him in a questioning way, he looked down at my leg and said "You're shaking your legs . . . you're gonna wear a hole in the carpet . . . you're nervous." I asked him what I had to be nervous about since I wasn't in the hand. He laughed and said "I just know you're nervous."

He proceeds to talk to me and continues to lean, reminding me occasionally that he thinks I'm pretty, when suddenly he says "Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't notice your wedding ring. I'm sorry - I'm just a horny old man."

I took that moment to say "Well, if you didn't notice the ring, you probably didn't notice my husband, either, sitting right over there, did you?"

He looked up surprised, and then began apologizing to both of us.

A couple hands later, I had QJ in late position. Drunk man had the button. Several folks were in by the time it rounded to me, so I called, and he raises behind me. Everyone made it $6, so I called the extra bet too.

Flop came 10-9-x. Rainbow. I figure I need to be in this one. And there is action all around. Including a raise I call. Drunk man re-raises behind me. Everyone calls.

The turn is a K. Rainbow. A small, but well-timed chorus of angels sounds in my head. At this point, Drunk Man turns to me and says "See, you're nervous, your leg is shaking." I conceded that maybe I might be. Or I might be cold. Like I told him the last time he commented on my shaking leg. There is betting, and I raise, and he says "Not gonna work" and re-raises. The turn gets capped.

The river is another 10. Makes me a tiny bit nervous. Not about him. About the rest of the crowd. It checks to me and I bet. He raises, there is one caller, a few folds, and I re-raise. Knowing he doesn't have the nuts. He calls and the other person calls. I rake a MONSTER pot with my straight, and he turns over a pair. Not even top pair. Which wins me back the money I lost Monday night, plus the buy in from the Monday night tourney.

As I tried to organize an unwieldy pile of chips, I couldn't help but turn to him and say "I told you I was cold." Then I turned to my husband and said "Honey, you sleep with me . . . tell him how I'm always cold."

DrChako wisely said "No you're not . . . "

I think that was the right thing to say . . .

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Monday, August 25, 2008

A Boy Becomes . . . A Bigger Boy

Yesterday was the anniversary of the day I went under the knife. They called it "failure to progress". Which translated into something like "your kid has a big head, your epidural is wearing off, and I have been on call a long time . . . let's get him out." Enter anesthesia and the knife. Experienced docs can have a baby out of you in minutes, let me tell you.

I remember being really disappointed in being robbed of a "natural" delivery. Somehow, I thought it would be better to have brought my son into the world the way nature intended.

Yesterday, as this handsome, bright-eyed, floppy-haired kid stood there, surrounded by his friends, blowing out 11 candles and cracking jokes, I realized it didn't matter how he got into this world. Just that he was here. And mine.

Another year older. But still my first baby.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Friday, August 22, 2008

Jayne, You Ignorant Slut . . .

Bite me.

I don't need a lecture from you. Miss "no husband, no kids, no job this week " . . . Miss "oops, my Blackberry doesn't have service here on the ranch . . . good thing my camera and my charm still works" . . . I'm sure if I led that kind of life with no responsibility I would be as laid-back and fun-loving as Jayne too. Hardest thing you had to do all week was drag your ass out of bed to meet Betty's "early" morning schedule and decide which color tank top to wear.

Besides, who's hard work paid for that trip, little missy? Huh?

When you finally get a real job . . . something other than know-it-all, upstart alter ego . . . and some real responsibilities, come talk to me then, bitch.

Until then, zip it.

And by the way? That silent "y" thing is really pretentious . . . as if you didn't know.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Dear Mrs. Chako . . .

Do you have a burr under your saddle or something this week girl? Sheesh. You need to take a chill pill. Get yourself to the ranch or something. Nothing a nice ride won't fix. On Duke, that is. You can't have my cowboys.

Ok, so you're lookin' all snazzy in your stuff this week . . . and I admit the little red Guess pumps are a good choice for a Friday. But all that window dressing can't hide the stress ball underneath. Good thing your family loves you - I don't know if I can put up with much more of your attitude, girl. It's starting to bring me down. And that's hard to do.

Come on, let's work on relaxing. We're going to channel DK's advice . . . Breathe. That's it. Breathe.

Ok, now think about Duke . . . pretend you're riding Duke. Did you go ordering Duke around? No. You just sat, and let him take you on the ride. Lean forward going up the hill, lean backward going down the hill. Easy enough. Sit back. Take a few pictures while you're along for the ride. You didn't remind Duke every five minutes he needed to stay on the trail. Hell, you even gave him enough rein to eat some clovers . . . maybe we all need a little rein to eat some clovers, Miss Bossy.

Has anyone died because you didn't finish a memo? Didn't submit your expenses? Aren't sure if your client's cash balances? No. So pretend you're on the ranch - NO SIGNAL. Walk away from the phone. The Blackberry. The email. It will be there tomorrow. Or at least later tonight.

Ok, I know you'll feel better if you go finish those last couple things on your "to do" list, so go get it done. And you'd better scratch "Christian" off that list - I think Betty had dibs. The Dr. might not take too kindly to that item anyway.

Oh, and stop worrying about those few extra pounds . . . a little elk meat and a couple helpings of bacon and eggs on your ass never hurt anyone . . . besides, we fill out our jeans a little better with it. The boys at the ranch didn't seem to notice the extra cushion from the apple cobbler. If its really bothering you . . . then go eat a salad or two, or go take a walk. Sitting in your glass walls stressing over your Excel spreadsheet ain't helping, sister.

Hell, girl . . . channel me. I know how to relax and enjoy life . . .



Stop Reading If You are Blonde

My 10-year old pulled this blonde joke out at dinner last night. I don't know what was funnier. The blonde joke, or the fact that my 10-year old is telling it . . . with pretty good comedic timing . . .

There's a pretty young blonde thing on a flight to Las Vegas seated way in the back. Not liking her seating accommodations, she walked up the aisle to first class and plopped down in an empty seat.

The flight attendant tapped her on the shoulder. "Miss, you can't sit there. You need to stay in your assigned cabin."

The blonde flipped her hair and said "I'm blonde, I'm cute, and I get what I want," and went back to reading her magazine.

The flustered flight attended contacted the co-pilot, who came out of the cockpit. "Miss, you can't sit there. You need to return to your seat in coach."

The blonde flipped her hair again and said "I'm blonde, I'm cute, and I get what I want," and promptly ignored him.

The flustered co-pilot went back in the cockpit and relayed the story to the captain. The captain said "stay here" and went out into the first class cabin to talk to the young woman. He smiled, and leaned down and whispered in her ear. She smiled sweetly at him, gathered her things, and returned to her original seat.

Back in the cockpit, the co-pilot and flight attendant were marveling over his success. "How did you get her to go back to her seat?" they asked.

"I told her the people in first class weren't going to Las Vegas."

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Life and The Universe . . . According to Five Year Olds

I was home earlier than normal and picked my son up from preschool. As most kids his age like to do, he loves to re-hash "when I was born".

So I listened to the story of how he was born. As if I wasn't there. He likes to remind me that my tummy got "really, really big". That was an understatement.

He's chattering and I'm nodding . . . "and then I was born in Germany and . . . what is this place where we live, mom?"


"Yeah, America. You know how we got from Germany to America?"

"How did we get from German to America, son?"

"A black hole. They're really fast . . . " (1)

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

(1) For those of you wondering, we actually arrived in the US via US Airways flight from Frankfurt to Seattle . . . but I'm sure the black hole theory sounds more exciting to his preschool friends.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Two Chicks on a Ranch

Yellowstone was amazing. Thought it really couldn't get much better.
Never say never. I said that more than once this trip. Never say never.

After a solid night of sleep and a belly full of food, we got up early (read, Wife early, not Betty early), packed up the Prius, and headed to see more Montana. This was one day where we actually had a date with a couple studs . . .

Sorry, wrong studs . . .

We headed up to Ennis, Montana . . . where time forgot to move forward at the same pace the rest of the country moved.
After a photo journey down the street (yes, THE street . . . the ONLY street), we jumped in the car and made a loop back down through the Gallatin National Forest, past herds of pronghorns grazing in the meadows, past Quake Lake (there's a story, if you have time to stop and read), past other resort towns like Kirkwood with signs that say "Paradise has a 15 mph speed limit". . . and on our way to the 320 Guest Ranch.

Fortunately, between our good planning, Betty's penchant for speed when we're not following a pilot car through road construction, and our general touring efficiency, we had a little extra time. Good thing. My sharply-honed animal spotting skills got us our next best photo op. After convincing Betty that dark brown things without horns might be something other than female elk, we got our first sighting of a bear in the wild. . . . Way.

We were giddy with our good fortune when we pulled into the 320 ranch. We had plenty of time to check in. Unpack. Pop open a little bubbly before our scheduled engagement. Enjoy the mountain air and the sunshine. Discuss the hot desk clerk.

We walked over to the barns, signed the "its not our fault if you die" waiver, and got saddled up for a trail ride. Having not been on a horse for over 20 years, I was really pleased with how easily I remember how to ride. Of course, the fact that my mount, Duke, had done this 3 times a day every day for the last . . . however long . . . didn't hurt. It was a beautiful ride through beautiful countryside, and I'd do it again in a heartbeat. Despite the slight bruising on my ass where my ischial tuburcles and the saddle did battle, I wished we had chosen a longer ride.

But where the vacation gods close one door, they open another. We returned to the ranch, cleaned up a bit, and headed to the saloon. For a ranch out in the middle of nowhere, the folks really knew how to treat us. Steve brought us a healthy dose of some fine California Cabernet to whet our whistles while we waited for our dinner reservation. Dinner was amazing, and it didn't hurt that our waiter was easy on the eyes and a sweetheart to boot. He was married, but he still found a couple opportunities to give Betty a gratuitous touch on the shoulder.

We were one of the last tables in the restaurant, sharing conversation with the rest of the guests. Betty and I expressed our dismay that there was no bonfire. DK, another one of the waiters/ranch help couldn't bear our disappointment; a couple giant logs and some lighter fluid later, we had a toasty beautiful bonfire.
Talk about making me hot. The bonfire of course . . .

Betty decided after a day on the horse that a hot bath was in order. I know this is the part where some of you are hoping I'm going to say I joined her . . . but we don't roll that way. I let her relax while I joined the last few stragglers out by the fire, and then moved into the saloon where the rest of the party was. The names are a bit of a blur, but I found myself at home among this motley but friendly crew, learning all sorts of interesting tidbits about the ranch. When the saloon action wound down, I was invited to join some folks in some of the local Big Sky establishments where I got to hang with the locals. We closed it down pretty late, and made friends with the highway workers on the way back that evening. DK wins points for being a great chauffeur and responsible driver, despite the liberal open container laws in Montana.
When the sun came up and we packed the Prius again, I wished we had one more day. The guy at the front desk tried to cut us a deal, but the plans were already in motion. We said our goodbyes and headed west.

The ranch was our last "official" tour stop . . . the rest of the trip was a casual stop in Missoula to see some friends of Betty's, and we eventually parted ways over the weekend while she spent another few days with her pals.

I couldn't have asked for a better road trip/chick trip/adventure. Had a great traveling companion. The Prius sipped gas like the precious resource it is. Our packing skills were finely honed. We covered nearly 2,000 miles together and except for the beastly drive through Nevada, would do it all again.

I hear that Big Sky has a rodeo around July 4th next year . . . I know where I could get us some drinks and a dinner comped . . .

Road trip!

Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

Becoming Jayne

Editor's note: Betty has graciously reminded me of a fifth rule of fake names . . . thanks, chica!

Road trips are as good a time as any for social experimentation. On one of our long drives through the park, Betty and I had a healthy discussion on the pros and cons of having a fake name. When and why you'd use it. The pitfalls of using it.

Rule 1: You have to remember your fake name. So it can't be too far out or weird, and you have to be paying attention all the time.

Rule 2: You have to have a fake last name, too. Everyone has two names. So its a whole persona.

Rule 3: Your fake identity has to have some basic background. Like where you are from. A job. Etc. Betty suggested that if I were going to adopt a fake name, I'd have to think carefully about my background. She suggested not straying too far from the truth. I guess its easier to tell a lie when its grounded in truth. Especially when you have to tell it repeatedly.

Rule 4: Vague and obscure work well. Such as with your job. "Writer" . . . could be anything. I think I'll have to go with "finance".

Rule 5: Anytime you are faced with a question that you don't have a fake answer too, "It's complicated" will frighten the curiosity out of about any man.

Armed with these new rules, we decide that I will try my new fake persona.

Meet Jayne. That's Jayne, with a "y". Jayne Chako. I'm in finance.

Jayne first showed up at Bullwinkle's Saloon on Wednesday evening. She ordered a table for two - her and her friend Betty. "Jane? Your table is ready." Jayne responded instantly. When Jayne and Betty left, the hostess said "Thank you, Jayne." Without missing a beat, Jayne said "Thank you," as she grabbed a toothpick and headed out.

Too easy. So the next day, we decided to give it another try at the ranch.

Steve, our bartender, was trying to match our dinner reservation with the room reservation so that we could charge dinner to the room. Apparently Betty Underground was difficult to find. I said "just put it under Jayne". He seemed happy with that. So the rest of the night, when anyone asked, I was Jayne. Jayne to the other guests. Jayne to our waiter. Jayne to the staff.

Funny thing is, the ranch had a way of making you one of its own. The gracious staff adopted me into their ranks as we sat around the bonfire, and later at the saloon. "Jayne, can I get you something to drink?" "Davey, this is Jayne . . . " "Jayne, want to see the article on the ranch?" "Jayne, come meet David . . . " "Jayne, want to head down to the Half Moon with us?" "Carney, this is Jayne . . . " "Jane, want another margarita?" " . . . Jayne!"

I left the next day, still Jayne. No credit card evidence to the contrary. No business cards, no numbers, no e-mails. If I am remembered at all, I will be Jayne from Seattle, who spent a day on a ranch in Montana.

I kind of liked Jayne. She was a laid-back, fun-loving girl with no worries.

Maybe I'll bring her to Vegas this year.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Monday, August 18, 2008

Amoebic Meningitis and Other Dangers

Falling rock. Wild elk. Amoebic Meningitis. Spontaneous geothermal activity and dangerous ground. Bears.

Yes, Betty and I have braved them all. And still live to tell the tale. Oh yes, if you ever find yourself scared in the wild, just look for us. We’ll be the cute ones in the extremely eco-conscious Prius wearing hoodies and sporting cameras next to the wildlife that seems drawn to our naturalness.

Day 4 took us back into Yellowstone for us much of the park as we could see. We headed straight for Old Faithful. As we arrived at the park, we both needed to make a quick potty stop. As I went into the bathroom, I jokingly said “Old Faithful probably will go off while I’m in the bathroom.” Spoke a little too soon – I stepped outside to find the famous geyser in the last couple spurts of its schtick. Go figure. And like a man, we had to wait a bit for the thing to recover before it was ready to blow again.

We took a hike around the park area, and it didn’t disappoint. In fact, the other geyser activities and formations, while less predictable, were actually more unique and varied, and still had their fair share of water spurting and steam. It’s hard to even explain what it looks like.

We wrapped up our hike and headed back for lunch and the next scheduled eruption of Old Faithful. Which, after a few false starts, didn’t fail to disappoint. What it lacks in sheer glamour, color, or formations, it makes up for in predictability, duration, and height. Who says size doesn’t matter?

We cruised around the rest of the park and took in more of the geyser basins. Alternately awed by the formations, warmed by the rolling clouds of steam, and asphyxiated by the sulfur smell. We finished up the geyser basins and headed up to Mammoth Springs, which had spectacular mountain valley views. The hot springs themselves were pretty interesting – the water creates pools and cascades I can’t even begin to explain. It also had the biggest phallus I’ve ever seen. I’m sorry – I know you thought it was you . . . talk about huge junk.

We opted out of Boiling River. Although it is one of the few places in the park where you can actually get in the water, the warnings about amoebic meningitis were pretty dire. And even though there had been no reported cases so far, we weren’t in the mood to make medical history.

Thoroughly exhausted (and disappointed that we had YET to see any bison), we headed back to the hotel. Until Betty spotted another herd of elk. Much closer than previous herds of elk. Suddenly, Miss “Elk Schmelk – Elk is the new deer” wants a photo op. I gave her one better. I used my Elk-Whisperer skills. With a few kissy noises and a little slap on the thigh (gets them every time) I managed to get her a good close-up on the elk. You gotta check it out. She half-heartedly kept saying “you need to move away from her and get back the car” as she snapped picture after picture. She’ll thank me later.

Other notable moments on Day 4:

  • First false moose alarm. Well, there actually was a moose. We just arrived to late to see it. Betty and I consider starting other false animal sightings, just to see how many cars we can get to stop.

  • We decide spotting animals in the wild is hard work. Next time the shopping list will include condoms AND infrared goggles to spot their heat signatures. I don’t care how dorky Betty thinks it might look. Editors note: Although they were on Betty's shopping list, I did not have use for any condoms. However, I could definitely have used some infrared goggles . . .

  • Asian tourists wearing matching flannel shirts. Priceless.

  • Betty orders Moose Drool at Bullwinkle’s Pub in honor of the false moose sighting.

  • We (read, me) like Bullwinkle’s Pub because (a) they are one of the few restaurants not closed for some bizarre reason (like it’s Wednesday or the stove blew up) and (b) someone is a huge Green Bay fan, so they must have good taste.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Big Hat . . . No Cattle

Nice truck, no horse,

Thanks for the lyrics, DK. But even though the only real dirt Betty had on her cowboy boots was a little horse sweat from our one hour stint on horseback, it didn't matter. We were treated like we belonged. Here.

If you want a nice getaway in one of the most beautiful places America has to offer . . .
You. Must. Go.
Oh. And tell them Jayne sent you.
Nice job on the random ranch selection, Betty!
Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Trucks My Boyfriend Might Drive

Certain things are true about various regions of the US. New Yorkers talk fast. Southerners talk slow. Texans think everything in Texas is bigger and better.

In the west, a truck determines your status as a man. You figure it out quickly.

To that extent, I started paying attention to trucks. If I was a true western girl, I think these are trucks my boyfriend might drive if I lived in . . .

Winnemucca, Nevada. Notice the practicality of the dual cab . . . and the artistic blue swirls.

Idaho Falls, Idaho. Again, the attention to detail . . . although this one was for sale . . .

Idaho Falls, Idaho. Since the previous one was for sale (leaving me questioning my boyfriend's ability to support me in the style in which I would have become accustomed to in Idaho Falls), I searched for a backup . . . I could do law enforcement. Check out the rack on the front. Oh, and it also had a fine tow package.

Yellowstone National Park. The jacked up H2 with the extra fog lamps/headlights. Kinda fashionable meets dirty and practical. Just like I like my men.

Ennis, Montana. Dual cab, box in the back, diesel . . . but I was a little premature in my choices, so I ditched this guy and found a new boyfriend.

Ennis, Montana (revised). Dual cab? I don't need no stinkin' dual cab. I got a flatbed with a gun rack (gun included) - its just me and you baby!

Somewhere outside of Big Sky, Montana. Oh yeah. Dual cab, dual wheels, horse trailer, and a HORSE! The man has livestock for heaven's sake - could I do any better than that?

Now if only I could adjust to the thought of living SOOOO far from civilization. For extended periods of time. Away from the DSW.
Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Day Tripping - Day 3

Except for her bizarre attachment to the wee morning hours (read, before 10 a.m.), Betty is a great travel companion. She drives, I navigate, we never fight about what to eat, and she doesn't snore. And she's one of the most expedient travelers, so Day 3 saw us covering Idaho Falls, Jackson Hole, and a good portion of Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks. And taking a boatload of pictures.

The full moon showed up a little early in Idaho Falls . . . apparently Betty's skirts and strong Idaho breezes don't mix well. Sorry, folks, no pictures.

Speaking of moons, Betty is also the first blogger (other than my husband) to have witnessed the samba panties in person. Eat your heart out, Waffles.

Speaking of waffles, we ate breakfast at Smitty's - they have meat waffles. I kid you not.

It was good food, but one of those places. Silver dollar pancakes were 6 for $4.50. Or 15 for $7.90. Who can pass up that bargain? Apparently not the fat woman at the table behind us - Betty could barely get her chair pulled back to sit down.

The falls were manufactured, but fake. Having seen most of Idaho Falls, we headed out of town.

The scene started to get prettier - the Grand Tetons seemed gather beauty around them much better than the sand hills of Nevada. Rolling hills, trees, farms, babbling brooks . . . you name it. Much easier on the eyes.

Midday found us in Jackson Hole. Washing down a couple burgers with a beer. But not just any beer. The Million Dollar Cowboy Bar Beer. At the Million Dollar Cowboy Bar. With about 40 bikers on their way home from Sturgis. Apparently, Jackson Hole was a 2008 Sturgis Pit Stop. Really. Saw it on a T-shirt. Must be true.

We determined a couple things about Jackson Hole.
  • It is cute and quaint (even if a little manufactured)
  • The public restrooms smell like ass. I held my breath the whole time.
  • You can buy almost anything "moose" here
  • You can buy cowboy boots made of python. On sale for a mere $700.
  • You can also buy a stuffed beaver rowing a canoe for $600. No kidding. I'd show you a picture, but they didn't allow photography. Probably didn't need some amateur taxidermist getting any funny ideas. My birthday is only a few months away you know . . .

We left Jackson Hole and headed north to Yellowstone. Other than the bizarre stop for road construction, we made great time and actually decided to try to see some things in the park before heading to our hotel. We stopped at the West Thumb basin, which is on the western shores of Lake Yellowstone.

Yesterday's collage/mosaic may have confused some of you . . . but then you need to see Yellowstone to understand. I kept expecting geysers like what you see in pictures of Old Faithful. What I didn't expect was the rest of the landscape that goes with this kind of geothermal wonderland. Without perspective (like the pictures yesterday), you're not sure if you are looking at a moonscape, a seascape, an underwater reef, or an infrared scan of the earth from space. The formations were unusual; watching water steaming and boiling and then running into a lake bigger than the eye can see was amazing. The sulfur smell was overwhelming in parts; the beauty and uniqueness unmatched. The colors were almost better than an underwater reef at times, made from varying strains of bacteria. The rock formations alternated between looking like caves, snow, coral, ice, and volcanic residue. Needless to say, the two of us had cameras snapping.

We made it to our hotel exhausted but satisfied with the visual wonderland . . .

Day 4 - Old Faithful waits!

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

PS - Was it rude of me to try to convince Betty that the Puzzle Face Ranch was a Canada Goose farm? She quickly figured it out after she realized that regardless of how many geese had settled on the property for a quick swim, it would be hard to keep them there . . .

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Day 3 - The Preview

Sometimes images say more than words . . .

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Road Trip - Day 2

Well, before Day 3 actually happened, Day 2 seemed pretty cool. Day 3 is starting to make Day 2 look like the 3rd runner up in the local "Miss Corn Festival" competition . . . but I'll give you some of the highlights anyway.
  • Disappointment in what an actual brothel looks like. Expected some aging, but used-to-be-attractive madame and a few half-dressed girls. Didn't get it and if I didn't know that we had the address of the Pussycat Ranch and its sister brothels correct, I'd never know that I was that close to flesh for hire.
  • Betty has an awesome iPod rotation for a road trip. And her new iPhone has this groovy software loaded on it - Shazam - you just point it at a song and it can listen and tell you what the song is, the artist, album . . . and I think you can then use it to order the album and arrange for lunch with the artist. No more calling your dork music friend . . .
  • Only two potty stops. Either we're getting tougher or not drinking as much.
  • Landscape is getting better. Must be getting closer to Idaho.
  • Chubbuck Idaho has the nicest Starbucks Betty has ever seen. And she used to open Starbucks.
  • The Mormon temple in Idaho Falls is one of the prettiest I've seen - and sitting on prime Idaho Falls real estate.
  • The "Falls" in Idaho Falls are beautiful. But like Pamela Anderson's landscape . . . apparently man-made. Little disappointing, but still beautiful.
  • We ate Italian - at Olive Garden - served by Mike, from Brighton, England - in Idaho Falls.
  • Betty's Marriott points get us the best accommodations so far this trip.

Classic lines from Day 2?

  • "I like when it throbs . . . "
  • "You have to remember your fake name . . . "
  • "Here's to Idaho . . . no, you da ho . . . "

You had to be there . . .

Stay tuned for my special upcoming feature, "Truck my boyfriend would drive if he lived in _____"

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Monday, August 11, 2008

Day 2 - The Preview

Oh yeah . . . its going well . . .

Sofia "Mini" - fine, sparkling California white wine. In a can. With a straw.


Yeah, that pretty much sums us up.

Thank you, Sofia Coppola.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Thelma and Louise . . . Or Something Like It

So Betty and I started what may prove to be an epic road trip on Sunday. We figure its kind of like Thelma and Louise. Without the sex with Brad Pitt (well, maybe not . . . ). Or the driving off the cliff to our deaths.

She's never done one, and I've never done with as an adult with money. Ought to be interesting . . . here's how Day 1 shaped up:
  • 11:30 a.m. - The Prius is loaded and ready to go. We opted for trendy and eco-friendly. Unlike the 24 plastic bottles of water we are going through at an alarming rate.
  • Glad I just got a Crackberry . . . 2 hours into the trip and I'm already forgetting details. I'm using the memo feature to record important things. Like number of potty breaks. Day 1 was a total of 4.
  • 2:15 p.m. - First major accident on the highway (going the opposite direction, poor suckers). First road kill on our side of the highway. Sorry Bambi.
  • 3:00 p.m. - First potty break and first major altercation at the Chevron station in Truckee, California. Apparently the woman at the head of the line made a comment to the woman coming out of the restroom about cutting in line. The woman coming out shot back a "I was with my mother - you can kiss my ass!" We were pretty close to Donner pass. I think the Donner family ate people. I would have been more careful with my sassiness - never know when someone might take a bite out of you. Oh well . . . the two clerks find us attractive. I would be flattered, but the competition isn't too fierce 'round these part
  • 3:30 p.m. - Crossed the border into Nevada - "Boomtown" was our first city. Not as booming as the name might lead you to believe.
  • 3:53 p.m. - First epic series of billboards advertising "good lookin' wimmins to sit on your lap" [sic].
  • 5:50 p.m. - Arrive in Winnemucca, Nevada. Home of black fire opal, a large concentration of Basque people, the second largest number of Basque restaurants in the US (4), and other famous houses of ill-repute, as Betty has mentioned.
  • Got honked at and got catcalls on our walk to dinner. Yeah, we might just be the two hottest things this town has seen . . . well, at least since the little heifers they had at the cow separating and cutting exhibition they had last week . . .
  • Ended the evening at Las Margaritas drinking some fine house margaritas . . .
Here are a few other things Day 1 had to offer us . . .
We passed this on our way to Winnemucca . . . is your love being "locked" a good thing?
You know, I guess I thought he was dead . . . apparently I was mistaken . . .
Well, now that the Pussycat Ranch is closed for renovations . . . you still have some inexpensive rooming choices in which to conduct your business . . .
Just "OK" . . . Not spectacular or anything . . .
Not only do they have "superior" livestock . . . but they also apparently ran out of "5's" . . .
It had some whole big history . . . but all I could think was "BAL - Big Ass Log"
Who said nothing in life was free? The Winnemucca offers plenty of free things . . . your kids AND your pet are free . . . as well as the "CONT" . . .

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Saturday, August 9, 2008

After the Rain

I have one rose bush in my yard. It chooses some of the oddest times to bloom. Last year, it bloomed in the middle of winter, after a brief warm spell. This year, its on its second round of blossoming.

When the sun comes out after an early morning rain, its few blossoms have never been more beautiful . . .

Respectfully submitted,
The Wife

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Speechless . . .

The JETS?!?!?!?!

WTF? . . .

I won't be a Jets fan . . . hope the Pack did the right thing.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife

Monday, August 4, 2008

Don't Toy With My Heart . . .

I logged into my computer. Booted up the AOL. Saw this.

Don't toy with my heart. I'm still yours . . . but if you break my heart again, I swear we're through.

Drizz, expect a prop bet or two before December.

Respectfully submitted,

The Wife